BAE Systems secures regulatory approvals to buy NASA supplier Ball Aerospace for £4.4 billion


British multinational arms, security, and aerospace company BAE Systems have been given the green light to acquire the aerospace division of the US defence giant Ball Corporation.

Further to the announcement last year, BAE Systems has now received the necessary regulatory approvals and will be executing steps in the coming days to complete the acquisition of Ball Aerospace from Ball Corporation.

BAE Systems say purchasing Ball Aerospace is a unique opportunity to strengthen their world class multi-domain portfolio.

The final transaction is expected to close at a purchase price of $5.5 billion (approximately £4.4 billion), which will be funded through existing cash and new external debt.

Ball Aerospace is a leading provider of spacecraft, mission payloads, and optical and antenna systems with decades of proven success underpinned by world class advanced technologies. The business has trusted customer relationships in the Intelligence Community, US Department of Defense, civilian space agencies, and with major aerospace and defence primes, and is well positioned in highly attractive markets, including military and civil space, C4ISR, and missiles and munitions.

The business is based in Colorado, with more than 5,200 employees, many of whom hold US security clearances. It operates across a broad base of customers and platforms and is well positioned in highly attractive markets, military and civil space, C4ISR, and missile and munitions. The space market exposure extends across positions in defence, intelligence, and scientific missions. The Tactical Solutions business is well positioned to capture expected increases in demand for missiles and munitions.

BAE Systems and Ball Corporation will be executing the plan to complete the acquisition in the coming days. The newly acquired business will be called Space & Mission Systems and will map within the Electronic Systems reporting segment.

Charles Woodburn, Chief Executive of BAE Systems said:

“In recent years, we’ve said that we would seek out opportunities to grow our portfolio in advanced technology areas that meet our customers’ most urgent needs, and completing the acquisition of Ball Aerospace is an example of that strategy in action.

“We look forward to welcoming the employees of Ball Aerospace to BAE Systems, bringing one of industry’s most respected and capable businesses into the Group. The addition of this quality, fast-growing technology-focused business will significantly expand our presence in this increasingly critical space domain and further enhances our value compounding model of top line growth, margin expansion and high cash generation.”

Ball Aerospace has a long and distinguished track record as a trusted partner and pioneering innovator.  Over the last five years, the company has demonstrated its ability to convert its highly differentiated capabilities into a strong order backlog that has nearly doubled in size. It has invested around $1 billion in world class facilities and capabilities which, combined with its highly skilled workforce, positions the business to deliver continued growth for years to come.

The proposed acquisition represents an exceptional opportunity to strengthen the BAE System portfolio with significant scale and high end technology capabilities. Ball Aerospace will add more than $2 billion in annual revenues in the growing space domain, C4ISR and missile and munitions markets. The acquisition will provide BAE Systems US business with a position in some of the fastest growing segments of the defence market.

Photo credit: Ball Aerospace


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